In life, we can always count on change. It is a constant. When we are confronted with change, we are often ill-equipped, or feel ill-equipped, to face it. Change comes in many forms from jobs, breakups, moving, children leaving for college, the death of a pet, new caregiving demands to the sad loss of a loved one. Change involves many emotions from outright joy to terrible pain.
Change is also uncomfortable, disruptive, and terrifying. It can paralyze us. We deny it. We fight it. We ignore it. We may resist and rail against it. In the end, none of these tactics make a difference. Change always wins.
Change is a given. Now what?
The most resilient people not only survive change, but also thrive in its wake. These people tend to have several traits in common. They are curious, contemplative, and embrace change as a teaching moment. They view change as an opportunity. They lean into it, own it, and learn from it. They will grow from it and eventually thrive because of it.
You hear the positive stories all the time. You hear of those confronted with change and they meet the challenge with curiosity, optimism, and even a sense of discovery. You hear of those with a devastating setback and turn it into an even better opportunity, one that feeds the soul.
The discussion around embracing change is not new to mankind. It spans the ages. In ancient Greece, Socrates wrote: “The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” To the modern day, Maya Angelou reminded us: “We delight in the beauty of the butterfly, but rarely admit the changes it has gone through to achieve that beauty.” Or, her classic: “If you don't like something, change it. If you can't change it, change your attitude.”
Creating The Positive Power of Change
As a LifeGuide, I work with individuals across all professions, ages, and backgrounds, who are working through their own disruptive changes. It is a process, and it is important to do the work. It also brings gifts to those willing to accept it.
I remember a lesson from my (dementia) caregiver group in finding these gifts. As they navigate the constant challenges the disease inflicts, they find new depths of strength, compassion, and empathy they did not know they had. They realize how it translates and is extended to others outside of this inner circle, which brings them a new element of joy, and a new gift.
When presented with change, we have a choice to make the most of it. If we let it, change has the power to defeat us, make us retreat from life. Or, we can use the power of change, embrace it, and have it propel us to new heights and exciting opportunities. It is hard work and we succeed by having the right tools, the right support, and the right mindset.
At LifeGuides, you’ll find a diverse group of Guides, who have been through just about every change possible. With their experiences and training, they share key coping mechanisms, including tips around meditation, exercise, healthy eating, journaling, and more. They put in the work with you. While there is no one size fits all when embracing change, LifeGuides is one path to find emotional stability in it, to learn and grow from it - and, most of all, to thrive, once again.
By Carolyn McGraw, LifeGuide in Growth, Purpose & Fulfillment